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Israel's Election by God
Israel's Rejection of God
God's Ways Higher
God Not Rejecting Israel
Romans 11:9 And
says, "LET THEIR
SNARE AND A
TRAP, AND A
BLOCK AND A
RETRIBUTION TO THEM.
Amplified: And David says, Let their table (their feasting,
banqueting) become a snare and a trap, a pitfall and a just
retribution [rebounding like a boomerang upon them];
ESV: And David says, "Let their table become a
snare and a trap, a stumbling block and a retribution for them;
ICB: And David says: "Let their own feasts trap them and cause
their ruin. Let their feasts cause them to sin and be paid back.
NIV: And David says: "May their table become a snare and a
trap, a stumbling block and a retribution for them.
NKJV: And David says: "Let their table become a snare and a
trap, A stumbling block and a recompense to them.
NLT: David spoke of this same thing when he said, "Let their
bountiful table become a snare, a trap that makes them think all is
well. Let their blessings cause them to stumble.
Phillips: And David says of them: 'Let their table become
a snare and a trap, a stumbling block and a recompense to them;
Wuest: Even David says, Let their table become for a snare and
a trap, and a stumbling block and a just retribution to them.
Young's Literal: and David saith, 'Let their table become for a
snare, and for a trap, and for a stumbling-block, and for a recompense
Summary on the Attributes of God
Spurgeon on the Attributes of God
Israel of God - Is God "Finished"
with Israel in His prophetic plan?
Off Site - Table
Comparing/contrasting Israel & Church
Off Site - Does the Church Fulfill
Israel's Program? - John Walvoord
The Jewish People, Jesus Christ and World History
- S Lewis Johnson
Are you confused about God's plan for Israel?
Then I highly recommend Tony
12 Hour Course on Romans 9-11
in which he addresses in depth the question of What
Will Happen to Israel?
or see the individual lectures below)
Romans 9:1-5 Paul's Sorrow Concerning Israel
Children of the Promise
The Potter and the Clay
A Remnant Will be Saved
The Righteousness of God
Has Israel Not Heard?
God Has Not Cast Away The Jews
Life from the Dead
Two Olive Trees
The Salvation of Israel
Note that when you click the
preceding links, each link will in turn give you several choices
including an Mp3 message and brief transcript notes. The Mp3's
are long (avg 70+ min) but are in depth and thoroughly Scriptural with
many quotations from the Old Testament, which is often much less well
understood than the NT by many in the church today. Garland takes a
literal approach to Scripture, and his love for the Jews and passion to
see them saved comes through very clearly in these 12 hours of teaching!
Take your home Bible Study group through this series if you dare. Take
notes on the tapes as the transcripts are a very abbreviated version of
the audio messages. This course is highly recommended for all who love
Israel! I think you will agree that Tony Garland, despite coming to
faith after age 30 as an engineer, clearly has been given a special
anointing by God to promulgate the truth concerning Israel and God's
glorious future plan for the Jews. Garland has also produced more than
20 hours of superb audio teaching in his verse by verse commentary on
depth transcripts also available) which will unravel (in a way you did
not think was possible considering the plethora of divergent
interpretations) God's final message of the triumph and return of the
our Lord Jesus Christ as the King of kings and Lord of lords! Maranatha!
AND DAVID SAYS LET THEIR TABLE BECOME A SNARE: kai Dauid legei
(3PAI) genetheto (3SAPM) e trapeza auton eis pagida: (Deuteronomy
1 Samuel 25:36-38;
1 Timothy 6:17-19)
May their table before them become a
snare; And when they are in peace, may it become a trap. May their
eyes grow dim so that they cannot see, And make their loins shake
Paul quotes David to show that David like Moses (Dt 29:4
"Yet to this day the LORD has not given you a heart to know, nor eyes to
see, nor ears to hear.") anticipated
that such an experience of the judgment of God would occur to Israel as
a whole ("the rest" Ro 11:7 ~ a partial hardening Ro 11:25). The hardening of
Israel will reach its height in the middle of
Daniel's Seventieth Week
(often referred to as the Tribulation). Scripture
anticipates the condition of Israel as it is today. God is not
surprised; neither should we be. If it were otherwise, we should be
Vine on "their table" writes...
It is here symbolical of the special privileges
granted to Israel and centering in Christ."
"A person’s table is generally thought of as a place of safety,
feasting, and sustenance. But the table of the ungodly and self
righteous will become a snare and a trap. The Jews considered God’s
Word, in particular the Torah, to be their spiritual sustenance—which
indeed it was. But because of their rebellious unbelief, that Word
became a judgment on them, a stumbling block and a retribution.
One of the saddest commentaries of history is that so many people place
their trust in the very thing that damns them. All false
religions—pagan, cultic, unbiblical Christianity, and every other
kind—present counterfeit means of salvation. The more their adherents
feed on the falsehoods, the more immune they become to the true gospel
of Jesus Christ, the living bread of life.
As she continued to reject God, Israel became progressively more
spiritually blind—so blind that she could not recognize her own Messiah
and Savior. Just as David had prayed in righteous indignation against
the sins of his own people, Israel’s eyes were darkened to see not.
Because Israel refused to see the things of God, God judicially ratified
her willing blindness. Bend their backs suggests the hunched over
position in which blind people sometimes walk as they grope their way on
a path they cannot see that leads to a destination they do not seek.
(MacArthur, J. Romans. Chicago: Moody Press)
Believer's Bible Commentary
"The table here means the sum total of the
privileges and blessings which flowed through Christ. What should have
been a blessing was turned into a curse." (Believer's Study Bible.
Criswell Center for Biblical Studies. Nashville: Thomas Nelson)
Ryrie comments that
"God's blessings (THEIR TABLE) actually became a stumbling block
to their receiving God's righteousness. " (Ryrie Study Bible)
Bible Knowledge Commentary
"[Ps 69:22-23] which predicts that the very things which should
have been the source of nourishment and blessing to Israel (table means
their blessings from the hand of God, which should have led them to
Christ; cf. Galatians 3:24) became the occasion for their rejection of God.
(Walvoord, J. F., Zuck, R. B., & Dallas Theological Seminary. The Bible
Knowledge Commentary: Wheaton, IL: Victor Books)
KJV Bible Commentary has
"The words snare, trap, and stumbling block are
closely related. Their combination serves to enforce the turning of the
table to its opposite intent. The table is indicative of the bountiful
mercy and blessing of God to Israel. Israel has not partaken of the good
things of God’s table. The recurring motif of the unseeing eyes
indicates the principle that the temporary blindness has overtaken all
of Israel, with the exception of the believing remnant. Thus the
application is clear. Those who seek their own righteousness must bow
down their back always to the bondage of sin. But those who seek the
righteousness of Christ receive it by grace and are the believing
remnant of God." (KJV Bible commentary. Nashville: Thomas Nelson)
Warren Wiersbe writes
Their “table to become a snare” means that their blessings turn
into burdens and judgments. This is what happened to Israel: their
spiritual blessings should have led them to Christ, but instead they
became a snare that kept them from Christ. Their very religious
practices and observances became substitutes for the real experience of
salvation. Sad to say, this same mistake is made today when people
depend on religious rituals and practices instead of trusting in the
Christ who is pictured in these activities. (Wiersbe, W. W. The Bible
Exposition Commentary. Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books.)
A SNARE: eis pagida:
(3803) (pagis) describes
that which causes one to be suddenly endangered or unexpectedly brought
under control of a hostile force.
Pagis is found 5x in the
Pagis specifically was a snare or trap in which birds
were entangled (unexpectedly, suddenly, unawares) and then came to refer to
whatever brings peril, loss, destruction including the
allurements and seductions of sin. (cf
interesting background on "Fowler" ~ Professional bird catcher
AND A TRAP: kai eis theran:
(2339) (theran is derived from ther = wild beast) denotes a hunting of
wild beast to destroy them and then a prey, game or trap and thus
figuratively as used here referred to preparing destruction for men by
use of a net or “trap”.
AND A STUMBLING BLOCK : kai eis skandalon:(9:32-33 Rev2:14)
for in depth study of
skandalon) referred literally to that part of a trap on which the bait was laid and
when touched caused the trap to close on its prey. It came to mean any
entanglement of the foot [Trench].
In NT skandalon is
always used metaphorically, and ordinarily of anything that arouses
prejudice, or becomes a hindrance to others, or causes them to fall by
Skandalon denotes an
enticement to conduct which could ruin the person in question. Sometimes
the "enticement" or hindrance is in itself good (as in the current
verse), and those stumbled by it are the wicked. In this verse the
Messiah is the SKANDALON, especially Christ crucified & the Cross.
AND A RETRIBUTION (God’s judgment) TO THEM : kai eis antapodoma autois: (Dt32:35 Ps28:4 Isa59:18
(antapodoma from antí = in turn + apodídomi =
render) means a giving back in return for something received and so that
which is offered or given as recompense, retribution (in both a good
sense and a bad sense)
blessings be like a trap that makes them think all is well & which
causes them to stumble & which pays them back. Because they refused to
receive God’s truth (Isa6:9-10 Jn5:40) their backs will be bent under
the weight of guilt and punishment forever.
Romans 11:10 "LET THEIR
SEE NOT, AND
Amplified: Let their eyes be darkened (dimmed) so that they
cannot see, and make them bend their back [stooping beneath their
ESV: let their eyes be darkened so that they cannot see,
and bend their backs forever."
ICB: Let their eyes be closed so they cannot see. Let their
backs be forever weak from troubles." Psalm 69: 22-23
NIV: May their eyes be darkened so they cannot see, and their
backs be bent forever."
NKJV: Let their eyes be darkened, so that they do not see, and
bow down their back always."
NLT: Let their eyes go blind so they cannot see, and let their
backs grow weaker and weaker."
Phillips: let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see,
and bow down their back always'.
In the providence of God disaster has been turned to good account
Wuest: Let their eyes be darkened in order that they may not
see and in order that they may always bow down their back.
Young's Literal: let their eyes be darkened -- not to
behold, and their back do Thou always bow down.'
LET THEIR EYES BE DARKENED TO SEE NOT: skotisthetsan (3PAPM) hoi ophthalmoi auton tou me blepein (PAN):
2 Peter 2:4,17;
Let...be darkened (4654)
(skotizo from skótos = darkness) means literally to be or
become dark, to be unable to give light and figuratively to obscure.
voice) calls for
action that comes from without the one who is darkened (spiritually
speaking) This is a terrible imprecation (uttering in a sense a curse
Because Israel refused to see the Lord Jesus as Messiah and Savior, they lost the power to see Him. Because they
steadfastly, stubbornly refused to hear the pleading
voice of God, now they were smitten with spiritual deafness. That
terrible judgment continues to this very day.
Paul describes a similar darkening
of all men who have suppressed the truth about God in unrighteousness...
"For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God, or give
thanks but they became futile in their speculations & their foolish
heart was darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools & exchanged
the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of
corruptible man & of birds & four-footed animals and crawling
creatures." (Ro 1:21-23)
This clearly ties in with the “spirit of stupor” in v8 and the hardening
in v7, and indicates that Israel as a whole was blinded toward the truth
of the gospel. As she continued to reject God, Israel became
progressively more spiritually blind—so blind that she could not
recognize her own Messiah and Savior. Just as David had prayed in
righteous indignation against the sins of his own people, Israel’s eyes
were darkened to see not. Because Israel refused to see the things of
God, God judicially ratified her willing blindness.
AND BEND THEIR BACKS FOREVER: kai ton noton auton dia pantos sugkampson
(sugkampto from sún = together + kámpto = to bend,
bow) means to bend together, to bow down low. It pictures bend together
as of captives whose backs were bent under burdens. This is written in
the form of a command (aorist
picture suggests the hunched over position in which blind people
sometimes walk as they grope their way on a path they cannot see that
leads to a destination they do not seek.
Forever (1275) (diapantos
from diá = through + pantós = all) literally means through all
continuous unbroken permanence of a characteristic habit. This means
through all time and so constantly or continually. It does not mean
“without end,” but is more accurately rendered “constantly” or
“continuously". That is, as long as it lasts, may there be no relief.
It is difficult to tell exactly what calamity this is supposed to
represent. It may be a figure for the hard labor of slavery, the
heaviness of a burden, a state of weakness, or the overwhelming effects
of grief or fear. Any of these could apply to first-century Judaism.
Paul may be saying,
“May their backs be always weak and feeble under the
burden that they bear because of their rejection of the gospel” (Fitzmyer).
Or he may be referring to
“the state of slavish fear in which the Jews
shall be held as long as this judgment of hardening which keeps them
outside of the gospel shall last” (Godet).
In summary, Paul says all in Israel not included in the remnant chosen
to salvation by sovereign grace were hardened. He explains this
hardening in that God gave them a spirit of slumber, an insensibility of
heart that made them insensible to the gospel, sightless spiritual eyes,
and deaf ears. How are we to understand this? Moses records the fact
that God hardened Pharaoh’s heart, but not until Pharaoh had first
hardened his own heart. The original hardening came from his totally
depraved nature. Then God hardened Pharaoh’s heart by forcing him to an
issue which he did not want to meet. The more God demanded that he let
Israel go, the more Pharaoh rebelled. The more he rebelled, the harder
his heart became. So with Israel. Israel rejected God and His Word, and
the more it did so the harder its heart became. Light rejected, blinds.
In addition to this natural hardening of the heart, there was God’s
judicial action of hardening as a just judgment upon its sin of
Romans 11:11 I
then, they did not
so as to
fall, did they? May it
never be! But by their
salvation has come to the
Amplified: So I ask, Have they stumbled so as to fall [to their
utter spiritual ruin, irretrievably]? By no means! But through their
false step and transgression salvation [has come] to the Gentiles, so
as to arouse Israel [to see and feel what they forfeited] and so to
make them jealous.
ESV: So I ask, did they stumble in order that they might fall?
By no means! Rather through their trespass salvation has come to the
Gentiles, so as to make Israel jealous.
ICB: So I ask: When the Jews fell, did that fall destroy
them? No! But their mistake brought salvation to the non-Jews. This
took place to cause the Jews to be jealous.
NIV: Again I ask: Did they stumble so as to fall beyond
recovery? Not at all! Rather, because of their transgression,
salvation has come to the Gentiles to make Israel envious.
NKJV: I say then, have they stumbled that they should fall?
Certainly not! But through their fall, to provoke them to jealousy,
salvation has come to the Gentiles.
NLT: Did God's people stumble and fall beyond recovery?
Of course not! His purpose was to make his salvation available to the
Gentiles, and then the Jews would be jealous and want it for
Phillips: Now I ask myself, "Was this fall of theirs an utter
disaster? It was not! For through their failure the benefit of
salvation has passed to the Gentiles with the result that Israel is
made to see and feel what is has missed.
Wuest: I say then, Surely, they did not stumble so as to fall,
did they? Away with the thought. But through the instrumentality of
their fall salvation has come to the Gentiles with a view to provoking
them [Israel] to jealousy.
Young's Literal: I say, then, Did they stumble that they
might fall? let it not be! but by their fall the salvation is to the
nations, to arouse them to jealousy;
I SAY THEN, THEY DID NOT STUMBLE SO AS TO FALL, DID THEY: Lego (1SPAI)
oun, me eptaisan (3PAAI) hina pesosin (3PAAS): (Ezekiel
The Amplified Version has...
So I ask, Have they stumbled so as
to fall [to their utter spiritual ruin, irretrievably]? By no means!
But through their false step and transgression salvation [has come] to
the Gentiles, so as to arouse Israel [to see and feel what they
forfeited] and so to make them jealous.
(parapipto ) means literally to fall away and then to
“They” refers to “the others” (v7), the majority
of the people of Israel, excluding the “remnant chosen by grace” (v5).
Paul’s question is preceded by the negative particle me which expects
a negative answer, “They did not stumble that they should fall, did
they?” The contrast here between stumbling and falling shows that by
the latter is meant an irremediable fall from which there is no
Israel has not stumbled and fallen beyond recovery. This is thus a
rhetorical question, not calling for an answer but proving
The Jews stumbled over Christ, but not so as to fall irretrievably.
The idea conveyed by falling is here suggestive of what is impossible
God’s temporarily setting Israel aside was not an afterthought or an
outburst of emotional anger but had a definite purpose. Again (11:1)
Paul introduces his point by asking a rhetorical question and then
giving the strongest negative answer possible. God has not allowed His
chosen people Israel to fall into such unbelief and disobedience that
they are unsalvageable. He has indeed given them “a spirit of stupor,”
and He “let their eyes be darkened to see not” (v8, 10). For a
divinely appointed time, He has let them wander about in spiritual
blindness and darkness. Yet their blindness is not irreversible, and
their darkness was never to be permanent.
MAY IT NEVER BE: me genoito (3SAM0):
Once again the question in Greek
was worded to elicit a negative answer, and for the 10th and last time
in Romans, Paul responded, me genoito [Romans 3:4, 6, 31 6:2,15 7:7,13 9:14
BUT BY THEIR TRANSGRESSION SALVATION HAS
COME TO THE GENTILES: alla to auton paraptomati e soteria tois
Jesus had instructed Paul
to turn to the Gentiles, Luke recording Paul's testimony that...
18 and I saw Him saying to me,
'Make haste, and get out of Jerusalem quickly, because they will not
accept your testimony about Me.' 19 "And I said, 'Lord, they
themselves understand that in one synagogue after another I used to
imprison and beat those who believed in Thee. 20 'And when the blood
of Thy witness Stephen was being shed, I also was standing by
approving, and watching out for the cloaks of those who were slaying
him.' 21 "And He said to me, 'Go! For I will send you far away to
the Gentiles.'" (Acts
Luke records the fulfillment
(3 times) of our Lord's prophetic charge to Paul, a charge to change
direction from the Jews to the Gentiles...
And Paul and Barnabas spoke out
boldly (during the first missionary journey when they were at Pisidian
Antioch, on the Sabbath day in the synagogue) and said, "It was
necessary that the word of God should be spoken to you first; since
you repudiate it, and judge yourselves unworthy of eternal life,
behold, we are turning to the Gentiles. 47 "For thus the Lord
has commanded us, 'I HAVE PLACED YOU AS A LIGHT FOR THE GENTILES, THAT
YOU SHOULD BRING SALVATION TO THE END OF THE EARTH.'" 48 And when the
Gentiles heard this, they began rejoicing and glorifying the word of
the Lord; and as many as had been appointed to eternal life believed.
And (Paul was at Corinth reasoning
in the synagogue every Sabbath trying to persuade Jews and Greeks)
when they resisted and blasphemed, he shook out his garments and said
to them, "Your blood be upon your own heads! I am clean. From now
on I shall go to the Gentiles." (Acts
And (during his house arrest in
Rome Paul was explaining to them by solemnly testifying about the
kingdom of God, and trying to persuade the leading men of the Jews
concerning Jesus, from both the Law of Moses and from the Prophets)
some (of the Jews) were being persuaded by the things spoken, but
others would not believe. 25 And when they did not agree with one
another, they began leaving after Paul had spoken one parting word,
"The Holy Spirit rightly spoke through Isaiah the prophet to your
fathers, 26 saying, 'GO TO THIS PEOPLE AND SAY, "YOU WILL KEEP ON
HEARING, BUT WILL NOT UNDERSTAND; AND YOU WILL KEEP ON SEEING, BUT
WILL NOT PERCEIVE; 27 FOR THE HEART OF THIS PEOPLE HAS BECOME DULL,
AND WITH THEIR EARS THEY SCARCELY HEAR, AND THEY HAVE CLOSED THEIR
EYES; LEST THEY SHOULD SEE WITH THEIR EYES, AND HEAR WITH THEIR EARS,
AND UNDERSTAND WITH THEIR HEART AND RETURN, AND I SHOULD HEAL THEM."'
28 "Let it be known to you therefore, that this salvation of God
has been sent to the Gentiles; they will also listen." (Acts
In turning to the Gentiles Paul was fulfilling
these purposes of God. Paul followed this procedure all through his
missionary labors, first going to the Jews, and when they rejected the
gospel, to the Gentiles, until finally in his first Roman
imprisonment, he abandoned Israel entirely and turned to the Gentiles.
The severe stumbling of which Paul speaks is, of course, Israel’s
rejection of her Messiah, Jesus Christ. But Israel’s rejection of
God’s own Son and His kingdom did not thwart God’s plan. On the
contrary (but), the Lord used that terrible transgression of His people
to accomplish His own divine objective.
The very people for whom the kingdom was intended and to whom the
kingdom was offered will be shut out of the kingdom. Individual Jews
who reject their Messiah will be banned and sent permanently “into the
outer darkness,” (Mt8:12) but the unbelieving nation shall one day
believe and be restored. In the meanwhile, because of their rejection
of the kingdom, God has offered the kingdom, and the salvation it
represents, to a people called out from among the Gentiles.
Although the widespread salvation of Gentiles came about because
Israel as a nation refused her Savior, that extension of grace was not
an afterthought with God. From His first calling of Abraham, it was
God’s intent that His chosen people should be the instruments of
bringing salvation to the Gentiles. “In you,” the Lord told Abraham,
“all the families of the earth shall be blessed” (Ge12:3). In the
covenant at Sinai God called Israel to be His witnesses, His spiritual
ambassadors to the world as “a kingdom of priests and a holy nation”
(Ex19:6). Like their Messiah, “the tribes of Jacob, and . . . the
preserved ones of Israel” were to be “a light of the nations so that
[God’s] salvation may reach to the end of the earth” (Isa49:6 Paul
applied this to himself in Ac13:47).
TO MAKE THEM JEALOUS: eis to parazelosai (AAN)
(parazeloo from pará = to the point of, unto, implying
movement toward a certain point + zelóo = to desire, be
zealous) means to stimulate alongside and thus to excite to rivalry or
to provoke to emulation and so to make jealous. The idea is that then the Jews would be jealous and want it for themselves.
Parazeloo is a Greek infinitive with a preposition (eis = unto,
toward) and carries the idea of purpose.
God’s purpose for this hardening is to use it as a means of converting
many Gentiles, which in turn will be a means of converting many of the
hardened Jews themselves. Thus paradoxically the ultimate goal and
result of the hardening is the salvation of those who are hardened!
The sequence of events is as follows: the bulk of the Jews reject the
gospel; they are hardened; as a consequence Gentiles are saved; as a
consequence of this, many of the hardened Jews are made jealous and
are saved; and as a consequence of this, even more Gentiles are saved!
Although jealousy is essentially a negative
term, God’s intention was for Israel’s jealousy of Gentiles to be a
positive stimulus to draw His people back to Himself. But Jews had
long disdained Gentiles ("dogs"), whom they considered to be outside the
boundaries of God’s grace. To be told they had lost their special
relationship to God was distressing enough, but to be told that God
offered that forfeited relationship to Gentiles was a bitter pill
But God’s ultimate purpose in setting Israel aside was not to drive
His people further away but to bring them back to Himself. He wanted
to make them face their own sin and its consequences, to sense their
alienation from Jehovah and to recognize their need for the salvation
that He now offered the Gentiles. As Jews see the Lord pour out the
kind of blessings on the Gentile church that once were reserved for
Israel, some of them desire that blessing for themselves and come to
Jesus Christ, their spurned Messiah, in repentance and faith. That
happens with individual Jews throughout this age, and at the end of
the Great Tribulation will happen to the whole nation (i.e., to the
one third who are refined and purified and turn to their Messiah for
salvation by faith)
One of the great ironies of history is the relationship of God’s
"chosen people" (the Jews) to the rest of humanity (the Gentiles).
Anti–Semitism by Gentiles has often been paralleled by, and sometimes
precipitated by, the anti-Gentile sentiments of Jews. It therefore
was-and no doubt still is for many Jews-an enormous leap from a
negative contempt of Gentiles to a positive jealousy of them. Yet that
is precisely the leap the Lord intends for them to make as a first
step in bringing them back to Him.
What is the practical
application of this truth to our lives today? It should be the desire of every Christian to manifest the spiritual
realities of a transformed life that would draw unbelieving Jews to
belief in our Lord and their Messiah, a witness that would tap their
divinely inspired jealousy of Gentiles and be used to turn it to a
divinely desired faith in His Son.
Unfortunately, the Christianity that Jews see in many professed, and
even some genuine, Christians reflects little of the love and
righteousness of Christ and of the salvation He brings. When they see
Gentile Christians who are dishonest and immoral, and especially those
who are anti-Semitic (yes, there is anti-Semitism in the church!) in the name of Christ (who was the supremely
perfect Jew), they are deeply and understandably offended and
repulsed. They are anything but jealous of such Gentiles, and they
distance themselves still further from the Lord instead of drawing
closer to Him.